Dodgers move toward keeping Podsednik

Dodgers move toward keeping Podsednik

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers on Tuesday exercised their part of a mutual option for 2011 on the contract of Scott Podsednik, who was acquired from Kansas City in a trade in July.

The 34-year-old outfielder has until midnight Thursday to exercise or decline his side of the mutual option.

An eight-year veteran, Podsednik hit .262 with a home run and seven RBIs in 39 games after being acquired for Minor Leaguers Lucas May and Jesus Pimental. But he missed the last three weeks of the season with plantar fasciitis of his left foot, which did not require surgery. The painful condition afflicts the ligament connecting the heel to the toes.

While healthy, Podsednik took over left field before and after Manny Ramirez's departure to the White Sox and also served as the leadoff hitter before and after shortstop Rafael Furcal returned from the disabled list. In 134 combined games, he batted .297 with 35 steals, 63 runs, six home runs and 51 RBIs.

With Matt Kemp in center field and Andre Ethier in right, Podsednik could be the starter in left field, work in a platoon with Casey Blake if the Dodgers acquire a power-hitting third baseman or be a fourth outfielder if the Dodgers acquire a power bat to play left.

Podsednik's club option called for a $2 million salary in 2011 or a $100,000 buyout. Podsednik earned the right to void the deal and become a free agent by reaching 525 plate appearances this past season.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.